By Ben Dinnery

15th Sep, 2022 | 12:12pm

Medical insider: Everton could break 'protocol' with Dominic Calvert-Lewin as images emerge

Everton are not currently under any pressure to bring Dominic Calvert-Lewin back from injury early – but the unique demands of the 2022-23 Premier League season could lead them to break protocol.

That is the view of medical expert Ben Dinnery, who runs the Premier Injuries site and has a background in injury and data analysis.

Calvert-Lewin, 25, has struggled with various injuries in the last year and has not featured at all in 2022-23 because of a knee issue.

But the Toffees released pictures last Thursday (8 September) of the centre-forward back in training for the first time this campaign.

The Premier League has had a round of postponements following Queen Elizabeth II’s death last Thursday, with those matches due to be rescheduled in the second half of the season.

The league will also pause for a month at the end of November to accommodate the winter World Cup in Qatar.

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Analysts predict a knock-on effect in terms of injuries and fitness issues in the congested second half of the campaign.

Dinnery suggests that unforeseen circumstances could lead Everton to bring Calvert-Lewin back earlier than is ideal.

You have got to be very wary of where he has been injury-wise over the last 13 or 14 months,” he told Football Insider’s Adam Williams.

This latest setback was a concern. Given the number of soft tissue and muscular problems he’s had, he’s not a player they will want to throw back in too soon.

“The arrival of Neal Maupay will help to ease that burden. Lampard has also Anthony Gordon up there, and Salomon Rondon is still there. Everton have to be very, very protective.

“You hope that he can put those injuries behind him and see out the season in strong fashion. I don’t think the manager will be under too much pressure to give him too many minutes early on.

It may be towards the winter break where we see Dominic Calvert-Lewin pushing for starts.

But, as always, the pressures of Premier League football mean that the protocols aren’t always followed to the letter of the law.

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